July 28, 2011
For the second consecutive night, the Atlanta Braves and Pittsburgh Pirates went into extra innings.
Locked at 1-1 in the bottom of the 10th inning, the Pirates chose to walk Dan Uggla to load the bases for catcher David Ross.
That move proved costly for the Pirates.
David Ross stroked a single to left field to drive in the winning run for the Braves.
Ross finished the night 2-for-4 with 2 RBI, stepping in for the injured Brian McCann.
Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez commented after the game about the ability of Ross to step up in McCann's absence: "I can't think of very many teams in the major leagues that have the quality we do at the backup catcher position."
Uggla was also clutch for the Braves as he went 3-for-4, extending his hitting streak to a career-high 18 games.
Jair Jurrjens started the game for the Bravos and pitched a solid seven innings, giving up one earned run and six hits.
Paul Maholm was equally good for the Pirates as he scattered nine hits over seven innings, striking out eight.
How will the Braves finish the season?
With this win, the Braves moved to five games back of the Philadelphia Phillies in the NL East and maintained their three-and-a-half game lead over the Arizona Diamondbacks in the wild-card race.
Chipper Jones pinch hit for the Braves and grounded out in his only at-bat. He is currently recovering from a quad strain.
The Braves acquired catcher Will Nieves from the Milwaukee Brewers and sent him to Triple-A to increase their depth while McCann is out.
With a perfect inning of relief, Atlanta reliever Eric O'Flaherty lowered his ERA to 0.92. He currently leads all major league relievers in that category.